Kiwi Ears, a relatively new brand in the audiophile scene, has garnered substantial acclaim due to their exceptional value-for-money offerings. Their latest release, the Kiwi Ears Quintet In-Ear Monitors, boasts a unique configuration featuring 1 Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) dynamic driver, 2 balanced armature (BA) drivers, 1 planar magnetic driver, and 1 piezoelectric (PZT) bone conductor. Priced at Rs. 20990/- in India, let's delve into this comprehensive review of the Kiwi Ears Quintet In-Ear Monitors.
Design and Build Quality
The Kiwi Ears Quintet opts for a simple, no-nonsense design with a matte silver color and minimal branding. The IEM shell is constructed from solid black acrylic material, presenting a low-profile and unassuming appearance. It appears that the brand prioritized investing in advanced drivers and R&D rather than flashy faceplates.
Comfort and Fit
Despite housing four different types of drivers, the Kiwi Ears Quintet manages to maintain a compact and lightweight shell. This design ensures prolonged comfort during extended listening sessions.
Before diving into the sound quality, it's essential to note that the Quintet benefits from experimenting with different eartip sizes. In many cases, a larger eartip than one's usual size may be needed. It's advised to give the IEM an hour or two of listening to adjust to the unique driver configuration and sound tuning. Over time, you'll find your senses dancing to its rhythm.
- Bass: The Kiwi Ears Quintet impresses with its bass, offering speed and physicality without excessive thump or bloat. The PZT driver adds a tangible bass presence to your listening experience. However, for those accustomed to heavier bass, a potential sequel with more body and rumble might be anticipated.
- Midrange: The midrange is where the Quintet shines with a well-balanced U-shaped sound signature. Vocals, especially female vocals, are portrayed with exceptional realism and smoothness. There's a delightful balance between thickness and delicacy, enhancing the listening experience for extended periods.
- Treble: The treble on the Quintet is a standout feature. It's remarkably detailed and clear, a remarkable feat given its price range. It excels at reproducing intricate details, even in complex tracks. What's more, the treble maintains an airy quality, providing a grand, orchestral-like experience.
- Soundstage & Imaging: In terms of soundstage, the Quintet delivers a wide and holographic feel, while its imaging is precise and accurate.
Value and Competition
Comparing the Kiwi Ears Quintet to other IEMs might not do justice, given its unique driver configuration at the 20K INR price range. It stands out as a distinctive offering, and the future may bring more competitors in this category.
Pros and Cons
|Unique driver combination
|Eartip rolling required
|Bass with speed and physicality
|Detailed, clear, and layered treble
If you've made it this far, you've likely discerned my deep admiration for the Kiwi Ears Quintet. I wholeheartedly recommend it to beginner and mid-fi audiophiles seeking a top-tier IEM in the 20K INR range. It boasts exceptional technical performance, controlled bass with speed and rumble, a velvety midrange, and incredibly detailed treble. Kiwi Ears Quintet is a masterpiece worth considering.
I'd like to extend my gratitude to Mr. Varun Roy for lending me his Kiwi Ears Quintet In-Ear Monitors for this review. All opinions expressed here are entirely personal and subjective. Thank you for joining me in this review, and I'll see you in the next one.